Military Intel soldier jailed for 27 months for leaking classified information

Two civilians who received top-secret info from soldier and published it on social media still awaiting trial

Emanuel (Mannie) Fabian is The Times of Israel's military correspondent

Illustrative: A soldier from the IDF's Military Intelligence Directorate works at a computer. (Israel Defense Forces)
Illustrative: A soldier from the IDF's Military Intelligence Directorate works at a computer. (Israel Defense Forces)

An Israeli soldier in the Military Intelligence Directorate was sentenced on Thursday to 27 months in prison for leaking classified information to social media, causing damage to state security, the Israel Defense Forces said.

The soldier, who was detained on May 24, 2022, was accused of passing top-secret information he was exposed to in his position in the army, to civilians who would later publish some of it on social media.

The IDF said that in some of the cases, the information that was made public caused damage to state security.

Under a plea deal, the soldier was sentenced to 27 months and was also handed a suspended sentence, the IDF said.

According to the indictment filed at a military court, the soldier shared numerous pieces of classified information with the two civilians, knowing the risk and the fact that it may be published to the public.

The two civilians arrested as part of the case were still under house arrest, pending trials. One of the civilian suspects was an intelligence soldier in the reserves, and the second was a minor at the time of his arrest.

The trio were accused of working together to release the information to gain credibility or popularity online, and had not been pressured by a bad actor nor acted for monetary gain, according to authorities.

The soldier was charged with “disclosure of information and deviation from his authority to the extent of risking state security” and conduct unbecoming of a soldier.

The adult civilian suspect was charged with obtaining, collecting and holding confidential information, as well as offenses related to transferring such confidential information.

The minor was similarly charged with receiving confidential information from the adult suspect and the soldier, sharing it with acquaintances, and posting some of it publicly.

Many other details relating to the case were barred from publication due to security concerns.

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